Summer desserts don’t have to be sinful in order to taste good. Especially here on the East End, fresh fruit can serve as a delicious base for many sweet treats.
Paige’s Sugarless Gluten-Free Oatmeal Cookies Without ButterMakes 40 2½- to 3-inch cookies
3 ripe bananas, mashed
1/3 cup unsweetened applesauce
2 cups toasted oatmeal
1/2 cup unsweetened flaked coconut, toasted
1/2 cup raisins
1/4 cup unsweetened almond milk
1 tablespoon vanilla
1 tablespoon cinnamon
Pinch of sea saltTo prepare:Preheat the oven to 350 degrees.
Working in the food processor, add bananas and applesauce and process until smooth.
Add oatmeal and coconut and process until mixed.
Add raisins, almond milk, vanilla and cinnamon, plus a pinch of salt and combine.
Drop by tablespoonfuls about 2inches apart onto parchment-lined cookie sheets.
Bake until set and cookies are no longer doughy in the center, about 15 to 20 minutes.
Cookies will be soft and moist.Free-Form Fruit Tart(Serves 6)For the crust:
1 cup all-purpose flour
1/2 cup almond flour
1½ sticks unsalted butter, cold
1/4 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
1 egg, beaten
2 tablespoons ice water
For the filling:
1/4 cup sugar, plus 4 to 5 tablespoons for sprinkling
1/4 cup ground roasted almonds, a few sliced for sprinkling
3 tablespoons all-purpose flour
6 cups fresh blueberries, washed, picked over and well drained
3 tablespoons unsalted butter, cut into small bitsTo prepare:Working in the food processor add butter, flours and salt.
Process until the dough is the size of peas.
Transfer to a bowl.
In a small bowl, whisk the egg with about 1 tablespoon of water.
Add the vanilla.
Stir the mixture into the dough with a fork, adding more water if necessary until the mixture forms a ball.
On a lightly floured surface, flatten the ball and roll out dough into a 16-by-18-inch oval that is 1/8-inch thick.
Transfer the dough onto a flat baking sheet.
Chill in the refrigerator until firm, at least 30 minutes.
Preheat the oven to 400 degrees.
In a small bowl, mix together the sugar, almonds and flour.
Spread the mixture evenly over the dough to within about 2 inches of the edges.
Arrange the blueberries over the almonds and dot with bits of butter.
Sprinkle sliced almonds over the fruit.
Fold the edges up over the fruit, creating a 2-inch border.
Sprinkle sugar over the whole affair.
Bake the tart in the center of the oven until berries are cooked and the crust is browned, about 45 minutes to 1 hour.
Slide the tart off the baking sheet with a thin knife under the tart in case juices have seeped onto the pan.
Cool to room temperature before serving.Fresh Peach Ice Cream(Makes 1½ quarts)1 cup sugar, divided in half
1 cup heavy cream
1 cup milk, non-fat or regular
5 large egg yolks
Pinch of sea salt
2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract
1½ pounds fresh very ripe peaches, unpeeled, pitted and mashed
Juice of 1 lemon, or 2 tablespoons orange juiceTo prepare:One-day ahead, place ice cream container in the coldest part of the freezer.
In a large saucepan over low heat, combine the cream, milk and a half cup of sugar.
Bring to a simmer, stirring occasionally, until the sugar is dissolved, about 4 minutes.
Meanwhile, in the bowl of electric mixer, beat the egg yolks until frothy.
Gradually add remaining sugar and salt.
Beat until thickened.
Remove 1 cup of the hot milk mixture and slowly beat it into the egg mixture.
Slowly whisk this mixture into the saucepan, whisking constantly to combine.
Simmer, but do not boil, stirring constantly until the custard is thick enough to lightly coat the back of a wooden spoon, about 6 to 7 minutes.
Whisk in vanilla and strain the custard through a mesh sieve into a stainless-steel bowl.
Set the bowl in a large bowl filled with ice and water to chill, stirring occasionally, about 30 minutes; or refrigerate for up to an hour.
Meanwhile, wash the unpeeled (but rubbed dry) peaches in a quart of water mixed with 1 tablespoon white vinegar.
Remove pits and cut into chunks.
Place in the food processor and coarsely chop/mash with lemon juice to yield about 2 generous cupfuls.
Taste and adjust the sweetness.
Stir mashed peaches into the cool custard and mix well.
Transfer the mixture to container of an ice-cream machine and freeze according to the manufacturer’s directions.
Transfer to a covered container and freeze overnight.
Scoop into dessert bowls and serve at once.
Top with fresh peaches if desired.